Bacteria thrives in environment where plaque and tartar are left on the teeth. This irritates the gums and can cause them to bleed more easily. This bleeding can occur when you brush your teeth or when eating, and is the early stage of the gum disease called gingivitis. To handle gingivitis, your dentist or hygienist will clean the plaque off of your teeth and surrounding areas by conducting a scaling of the area and polishing your teeth. If you wait too long to have the treatment and the gingivitis stays untreated, the inflammation and bacteria will spread to the foundations of the tooth which will cause what is known as a “periodontal pocket”. This develops a condition where the bacteria will cause even more damage.
This pocket shows that the person has gum disease. Gum disease breaks down the support structures of the teeth (the bone), which results in the teeth becoming loose. The person may have no symptoms for quite some times, but once the damage is done—it is irreversible. On the other hand, if the gum disease is caught and handled in time, its development can be stopped and the condition can be improved.
Your dentist and Dr. Fialkoff may suggest that you get a form of periodontal therapy called scaling and root planning to stop the gum disease from progressing, to get rid of the bacteria in the pocket and facilitate the bodies healing process in the mouth. Scaling is the process of removing dental buildup or tartar from the surfaces of the teeth. Root planing is the process of removing any infected tooth structure and the smoothening of the root surfaces. When you have pocketing of the gum or gum disease, the pockets around the teeth have grown which then allowed deposits of tartar to form in the area, under the gumline. During the scaling and root planing treatment, this tartar will be removed, resulting in a silky, smooth surface.